Meet Lindsay Siovaila
January 14th, 2017
Walk the halls of any tech department, and you’ll quickly notice far more men than women with their heads down, creating new technologies. Research backs up this noticeable difference; in 2015, less than 25 percent of the computing workforce were women. Fewer female techies mean fewer role models for young girls to revere and replicate. Luckily for many Central Indiana girls we can look up to Lindsay Siovaila, Lead Solutions Developer at Salesforce.
Lindsay’s passion for computer science started at a young age. Since Lindsay can remember, she’s been making things. She credits her family for influencing her creativity. Afterall her grandma and mom are artists, and her dad was always building things around the house. Most childhood days, Lindsay could be found in her room drawing or figuring out how to bring things to life on paper.
Lindsay’s passion to create continued in high school. She took a graphic design course, a rarity at the time, and spent hours in the lab figuring out how to bring her ideas to life on a computer. At home, she monopolized the family’s dial-up internet to learn HTML and CSS so she could customize her MySpace profile design. At that time the only way to change the design was to hack the front-end code.
“In all of this, I loved being able to use a computer to explore ideas and come up with ways to bring an idea to life,” recalls Lindsay. “I realized at an early age I could do some pretty fun stuff with code.”
Lindsay knew she wanted to combine her interest in design with her love for computers and coding. She enrolled in Purdue University’s Computer Graphics Technology program. She took web design, coding, video and animation courses and loved them all. In the process, Lindsay discovered a knack for designing and building websites. So, she did what came naturally; she invested more time to pursue her passion, picking up side projects building small websites for people and companies.
“I’m a huge advocate for learning in whatever way makes the most sense for a person,” shares Lindsay. “I like getting the basics down in class then applying that knowledge to a project with ‘real life’ circumstances and having to figure out how to arrive at a solution while keeping constraints in mind.”
Fast forward to today. Lindsay uses that same problem-solving along with her tech passion and skills to make life easier for her colleagues at Salesforce.
“What I love about being in tech is that we get to not only dream of ideas to help solve problems, we also get to implement ideas and see someone benefit from our work bringing it to life,” adds Lindsay. “I also love that you never know what will happen next with technology. It can be frustrating, yet there is always something new to explore and discover.”
Lindsay hopes more girls and women will follow in her footsteps so she volunteers at like-minded organizations. She currently serves as a coach for the Nextech Catapult program, where she meets one-on-one with a student to share insights and assist with tech projects. She also leads a local chapter of Girl Develop It Indianapolis. Both give her a chance to inspire females interested in coding and being part of a diverse tech community.
Among the wisdom she shares: “Some of your best work will come out of times when you get stuck and think you’ll never figure it out. During these moments, don’t give up! These are great opportunities to make mistakes and learn from them. Knowing how to problem solve, work backwards and ask the right questions will help you arrive at the right solution; they’re also important skills to have in your back pocket for anything you face in life.”
Want to hear more from Lindsay or learn how to volunteer alongside her? Follow her on Twitter.